Posted by: robinson2000 | August 16, 2010

The Hottest Highway to Hell

Since my last post we’ve basically covered another 100 miles split over 2 days. Yesterday we set off from Rathtrevor Campsite after one of our rest days where we are supposed to relax and catch up with some sleep. Unfortunately both of us have discovered punctures in our air mattress’ which means that after a couple of hours of sleep you end up dumped on the cold stoney hard floor of the tent and have to drag yourself from your sleeping bag to blow it back up. Luckily our air beds have synchronized themselves so that we get up together to blow them up every few hours. Now this must sound quite hilarious but after 6 nights in the tent and having to get up several times a night to inflate your bed its gets a little annoying!

We’d planned on covering 65 miles yesterday to reach a small campsite including 2 ferry rides just North of Victoria. The day started off well with a healthy dose of 5 pancakes, gallons of maple syrup and enough coffee to keep you up all for the rest of the year. We reluctantly left breakfast at 10.30am and hit the dusty trail. Even at that time the temperature was in the high 20’s and not a cloud in the sky. We pressed on up to about 1pm in which time we had covered approximately 35 miles and most of it had been spent on the hard shoulder of busy 3 lane highways. The one thing that you notice about Canadian traffic is the sheer size of some of the vehicles on the road. RV’s, jeeps, trucks, logging vehicles & mobile homes shudder past us at an alarmingly close proximity. By about 2pm we were both low on water and whatever was left was far from cool. The temperature had also crept up to a whopping 35 degree’s which felt like cycling through an oven. Luckily and fellow good samaritan cyclist saw we needed fluid and told us to follow him to his place. He lived in this ramshackle place just off the highway and proceeded to fill up our water bottles with icy water, give us a couple of apples from his tree and cool us down with his garden hose. What a life safer.

We pressed on for another 10 miles and finally reached our first ferry terminal of the day. A one hour wait meant that we had a little time to recover and feel slightly normal. We took the short ferry crossing to Versuvius Bay and then had a rollercoaster hilly 14 miles to ride over to the other side of the island and catch another ferry. Again a 1 hour wait so we took the opportunity to gorge on bbq chicken burgers and NY cheesecake. We finally departed from the ferry about 8.30pm and pedaled another couple of miles to reach McDonalds Campsite. By this time it was prett dark and the campsite was in the middle of some dense woods so by torchlight and a bit of patience we erected the tent and unloaded some of our stuff. We were both covered in dirt and salt so decided to strip down to our undies and find a shower. Unfortunately this was a very basic site with only a small pit toilet and a tap so we desperately resorted to filling up our water bottles and dousing ourselves in cold water just to feel a bit more human. About the same time the campsite ranger in a jeep with full beams rolled up the road. Not wanting to be caught in the middle of the woods, in my boxers & dripping wet I dashed James Bond style behind a tree for cover.

The next morning my muscles were screaming from the 72 miles we had completed and we were dog tired from another broken nights sleep. We dragged ourselves from the tent and pushed onto Victoria which was only another 20 miles on. In Victoria we found a nice hostel in Downtown Victoria and more importantly a soft bed that didn’t deflate in the middle of the night and leave you with sharp stabbing pains in your back. Here’s to 2 night of good sleep and some rest in Victoria! We can tick off Canada and look forward to crossing into the States in 2 days time.

Total Milage : 240 miles + 20 for getting lost

Punctures : still zero

Top Speed : 38 mph

Mood : Weary but relaxed

Archie waiting patiently for a ferry guarding the precious water.

A view over the Madina of the resort we weren’t really allowed to stay at. To the left of the photo was an amazing hot tub.

View over Powell River Campsite where there was a supposed bear on the rampage

Rathtrevor Beach Park.

Chris looking dazed at the 50 mile mark of a 72 miler.

A wonderful sunset from the ferry back to Vancouver Island.

McDonald Park Campsite. The morning after pitching the tent in the dark. Not a bad efford.

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Responses

  1. Hi Ben, once again a superhuman feat!! Pictures are good. Chris really does looked dazed. Could you get him to take a few more of you.
    Love,
    C&C


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